A few questions about the Strobonar Permacad power pak...

Discussion in 'Lighting Equipment' started by harris_austin|2, Sep 4, 2021.

  1. Okay,
    1) Does anyone know the voltage of the battery in the Permacad Pak-6 volts-12 volts?

    2) Does anyone know the polarity of the power cord-IE what pin is positive and which pin is negative? Also the polarity of the pins in the jack on the power pak?
  2. A cheap DVM ( ~ $10) will give you the answer to all those questions.
  3. Yeah-IF I had a Perma-Cad power pak on hand.....!
  4. I think it is less than 12v.
    But it has been a LONG time since I had the pack open, when I had the pack recelled.

    What are you trying to do?
  5. Gary, I'm thinking of building a high voltage power pack for a Strobonar 892s.
  6. If you are going to build a pack, you can choose whatever battery voltage you want, then do the voltage multiplication in the HV circuitry.
    Example, my Quantum Turbo uses an 8v gel cell, my Lumedyne packs uses (I think) 9 sub-C NiCds, for 10.8v.

    That reminds me, the cells in the Honeywell pack were NiCd, so the pack voltage will be a multiple of 1.2v.

    I suggest you design for NiMh cells. LOT more capacity than NiCd, and easier/safer charging than Li batteries.

    I don't know what the final output voltage to the flash is.
    Although, the pack was used in place of the 510v flash battery, so I "think" the output voltage would be around the same.
  7. Online pictures of the Honeywell mains-powered HV adapter show the output as 450 volts. That seems a bit high to me, since most flashes deliver only around 350 volts to the tube and main storage capacitor. Maybe Honeywell were an exception.

    There's a Sunpak HV shoulder pack that originally took a now obsolete (and expensive!) 510v dry battery. They later supplied a rechargeable 510v battery substitue. This was a plastic case containing 10 AA NiCd cells and an inverter circuit. The rest of the shoulder pack regulated the 510 volts down to 350. Talk about going all around the block to get next door!

    Anyways. If you can find one of those Sunpak NiCd 510 volt battery substitutes, it'll save you a whole heap of work. The circuitry is old and simple. It should be easy to regulate the output voltage down with a change of resistor value or two. The NiCds will most likely be dead, so no bigee to re-cell it with NiMH cells.

    But do you really want to resurrect a cumbersome old hammerhead that's probably only going to deliver as much light as a YN560 speedlight? Technology has moved on, and recycle times and efficiency have improved greatly in the last 50 or so years.
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2021
  8. Joe, I checked Ebay and they have a AC adapter for the 890/892 that shows a DC output of 360 volts.
  9. OK. That sounds pretty standard.
    I don't know which Strobonar adapters I came across online, but the labels definitely had 450 volts printed on 'em. Must have been for an older model I expect.

    360 volts is definitely in line with almost every other portable flash made in the last 40 years. Metz, Sunpak, etc.

    In which case one of the aforementioned Sunpak HV shoulder packs would do the job with little or no modification... If you can find one.
  10. Joe, my best guess is that the 450 volt power supplies were for a few of the Strobonars that ONLY worked with the 510 volt power pack.

    I make my own power packs-I get a boost transformer off Ebay and other part there and off Amazon and away I go. I'm switching over to Li-ion batteries to cut down the weight and shorten recycle times. I figure power transistors have been much improved in 40 years or so.
  11. Battery chemistry is not an issue for recycle time with a HV pack. My gel cell and NiCd HV packs are close enough to instant recycle for me. And as I recall my Strobonar 800 with the rechargeable NiCd pack would recycle as fast as I could crank the film advance lever.

    Li would cut the weight, but the charging is more tricky than NiMH.
  12. The weight saving is significant IME. I have some Godox 'Ving' speedlights that use a LiPo battery, they're noticeably lighter, and give a far greater number of pops between charges.

    Vaping chargers are pretty common and cheap these days, but are only geared toward the standard 18650 cells.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2021

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